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Please VOTE for EMandLO.com!

October 1st, 2014

photo via Flickr

All you ¬†have to do is press the pink “VOTE” button on our Kinkly page HERE!

 

Kinkly.com is holding a Sex Blogging Superheroes Contest: whichever blog gets the most votes from their fans gets not only the glory, but $500 in cash from our favorite pleasure object purveyors, LELO! And we could use it — writing a sex blog is not the lucrative career choice Carrie Bradshaw’s wardrobe had us all believing in. So if this site has ever:

  • Given you good advice
  • Made you laugh
  • Let you vent
  • Gave you an excuse to avoid work

…then please take one second and anonymously click the “VOTE” button here — it’s that easy! We’ll love you forever for it.

XO,

Em & Lo

 

10 Worst Things About Married Sex

September 30th, 2014


Before Midnight

Before all the married people out there take offense, we should note that we are both married, and happily so. We’re not curmudgeons; we already listed the 10 Best Things About Married Sex¬†–¬†and for the record, those ten things were way easier to come up with!¬†– but we believe firmly in looking at both sides of the picture (not in a Fox-News-climate-change-denier-”scientists” way, but in a realistic way). Also, the stuff below is just plain true, at least sometimes. In reality, though, there’s no contest: we’ll take married sex every time. So consider the list below a warning not about how bad married sex is, but about how bad it can get if you don’t pay a little attention.

1. It’s Sex with the Same Person… For the Rest of Your Life

We suppose we may as well get this one out of the way with first, seeing as, for many people, this is the only thing you need to know about married sex. Even if you’re in an open relationship and get to throw other people into the mix, you’re still sleeping with one person — your spouse — over and over and over again. All the chemistry and communication in the world can’t match the occasional boredom this will cause.

2. It’s Easy to Go On Autopilot

As we noted in our list of superlatives about married sex, marriage means having an advanced degree in each other’s bodies. It’s great to know each other’s sweet spots so well, but this also means that it’s all too easy to check out during sex and go on autopilot. You get lazy about paying attention to the way your partner’s body responds to something, and you get lazy about staying in the moment. Sure, it’s great not to have to concentrate so hard during sex, but it’s not so great when you find yourself thinking about what you’d like to eat for dinner.

3. You Rely On Old Routines

When you find something that works in bed, it’s easy to turn to it again and again and again. For example, if you’ve figured out how to have simultaneous orgasms in bed, then it takes a team effort to agree to try something else that might not have such a happy ending, at least not the first (or first hundred) times. When you first start sleeping with someone, every sex session feels like an opportunity to learn more about your partner, but with married sex,¬†it’s easy to plateau and not realize it (or simply not care).

4. You Put Off Trying New Things

Remember Scarlett O’Hara’s famous quote at the end of Gone with the Wind?¬† Well, when you’re married, tomorrow is always another day. And you can find yourself putting things off endlessly because you figure, hey, we’ll be having sex for decades, there’ll be time later. Time later to try a new position, time later to try something kinky, time later to work on living out that fantasy together.

5. You Hold Old Grudges

The longer you’ve been with someone, the more things they’ve likely done over the years to annoy you. Perhaps it’s the way they spray the mirror with toothpaste every time they brush their teeth, or the way they load the dishwasher, or the way they sneak glances at their phone during mealtimes. Big or small, these grudges can pop up when you least expect them — and being reminded of one of them right before, or even during sex can seriously spoil the occasion.

6. You Know Each Other Too Well

We’re constantly saying that communication is the key to good sex, but the problem with all that communication is that it develops a real bond. Don’t get us wrong, bonding with your spouse is pretty awesome — that’s the essence of modern marriage, after all. But intimacy can be at odds with eroticism in the bedroom. Desire requires some kind of distance, which can mean that the closer you get to your partner, the harder it is to step back and truly desire them. We burp, we fart, we might even poop when the other person is in the room. We ask each other to check our bodies for tick bites, or apply ointment to a hard-to-reach mole that the dermatologist removed. Having someone around to check your butt crack for tick bites is one of the many advantages of marriage — who else is going to do that for you, after all? — but these things do tend to eat away at the mystery, which can lead to sex that feels companionable rather than steamy.¬†Comfort sex like this, at the right time, can be just what the doctor ordered — but it’s hard to transition from comfort sex into, say, Japanese rope bondage or roleplaying doctor and nurse. It’s too easy, in this mode, to resort to laughter rather than taking the kinky scenario seriously — you’ll be more likely to crack each other up than turn each other on. Of course, cracking each other up in bed is one of the benefits of married sex, but it’s nice to get kinky every now and then, too.

7. Everything Is a Quickie

If you can climax quickly together, sometimes it’s hard to see the point in taking the scenic route instead, especially when sex ends up at the very bottom of your to-do list — after taking the kids to dance class, packing their school lunches, watching some awesome new show on Netflix, etc, etc. So the quickie ends up becoming your new baseline. Which can sometimes feel like you’re nothing more than a human masturbatory aid for your spouse.

8. You Have No New Material

Unless you commit to learning new things together (er, may we politely suggest one of our books?) or decide to open your marriage, once you stop sleeping with other people, there are no new partners to bring new ideas to the table (or, rather, to the bedroom). So your repertoire is now permanently limited to the things you two knew when you first met. Which is a very good reason to keep reading EMandLO.com daily!

9. You’re Not Always Particularly Attracted to Each Other

It’s simply not possible to be hot and heavy for your partner, every day, til death (or divorce) do you part. Attraction between spouses waxes and wanes over the years, and this is totally normal. You might find yourself stuck for months in one of these valleys and wondering if you’ll ever desire your partner again — and then, suddenly, you do. But when you’re stuck there, having sex with your mate can feel a lot like homework (or worse).

10. You Take the Sex for Granted

One of the great things about getting married is that you’ll never again have to stay out til three a.m. drinking vodka-Red Bulls and hoping that your creative dance moves will get you laid. Sex is right there waiting for you two, even when you’re both sitting on the couch in sweats. Besides, the level of obsessive primping and polishing you do at the beginning of a relationship cannot realistically be maintained 24/7 over a lifetime together, when kids/illness/aging happens. So it’s easy to take married sex for granted, and stop trying to impress each other, which only exacerbates the lack of mystery. And, of course, the more often you take married sex for granted, the more likely you are to turn around one day and find yourself suddenly no longer able to take it for granted after all.

MORE LIKE THIS ON EMandLO.com:

Your Weekly Horoscopes: 09-29-14

September 29th, 2014

grandcentral_ceiling_421photo by Simply Schmoopie

Each week, we at EMandLO.com predict the course of your love life for the week with our own version of irreverent horoscopes — ignore our advice at your own peril. (Hyperbole intended for dramatic effect.)

aries (Mar. 21st-Apr. 20th)
Sure, if you make a bold move, there’s a risk of rejection and heartache. But if you don’t make a move, then loneliness is a sure thing.

taurus (Apr. 21st-May 20th)
We would not want to be you this week. You’re going to find yourself between a rock and a hard place, put on the spot about a relationship, pressured to make some kind of monumental decision. Don’t do it! Stall them, buy some time, mumble something noncommittal about needing time to think, and then check back here next week. Hopefully the stars will give you something more to work with at that point.

gemini (May 21st-June 21st)
Sure, opposites attract, but that doesn’t mean they’re going to have anything to say to each other while they’re spooning after all that hot, opposites-attracting kind of sex. Write this down on a Post-It and stick it on your bathroom mirror, because we can’t always be there to say, “I told you so” ‚ÄĒ no matter how much we enjoy doing so.

cancer (June 22nd-July 22nd)
Take a look around. Someone has their eye on you. No, not that creepy freak at the grocery store who always seems to be waiting for you in the toilet paper aisle. We’re talking about someone with real potential. Play hard to get and you might get them in return. Just make sure you’re stocked up on T. P., because there’s nothing worse than running out when the two of you come home stumbling drunk at 3 a. m. for your first love sesh after a night of Mexican and beer.

leo (July 23rd-Aug. 22nd)
You can talk your way into anyone’s heart — but where’s the beef?

virgo (Aug. 23rd-Sept. 22nd)
As a kid growing up in the ’80s, romantic relationships were easy, and often built in a day: You go to a kegger in the woods after school on a Friday, get to second base with a new special friend that night, and end up dating for the rest of the year until Prom, when you get drunk on your Mom’s Peach Schnapps and end up making out with your high school math teacher. Not so as an adult: These days, relationships take time. Friendships need to be established first. You don’t necessarily have to give anyone a brightly colored, beaded friendship pin to put on their Keds, but some kind of nod to your blossoming friendship can only help get you to second later.

libra (Sept. 23rd-Oct. 23rd)
If only we had looked really hard in the mirror back when we feathered our bangs and wore side ponytails; if only we had questioned the practicality of all those snaps on the Members Only Jackets. We were just so quick to jump on the bandwagon, we didn’t realize we were actually jumping off the bridge of good taste. Replace fashion with romance and you have a pretty good description of your current relationship: It’s time to take a good look in the mirror ‚ÄĒ and at your partner’s wardrobe choices.

scorpio (Oct. 24th-Nov. 22nd)
You’re so busy dreaming about the mountains you’d scale and the valleys you’d traverse once you find True Love, you’re missing what’s right in your backyard. Perhaps even right in your own bed: Don’t discount your favorite booty call as a potential for-better-for-worse, let’s-eat-oatmeal-together-every-morning partner for life. Hey, you already know the sex will be great.

sagittarius (Nov. 23rd-Dec. 21st)
Keep your mouth shut and your eyes open this week. Keen observation, Sherlock style, may lead you to discover something new about your romantic interest ‚ÄĒ perhaps something dark and mysterious, like a dangerous past or a penchant for kooky hats and pipes.

capricorn (Dec. 22nd-Jan. 20th)
Your blushing rose act can only take you so far. This isn’t the fifties, you know. At some point you’re going to have to actually express interest if you want this little eye contact game you’ve got going on to develop into a full-blown relationship. It may seem “crass” to you, but trust us, you’ve already exhibited more than enough restraint and politesse to make your point. As Andre the Giant probably said once, it’s time to take it to the mat.

aquarius (Jan. 21st-Feb. 18th)
Sometimes it really is just a matter of bad timing. Sometimes they really do have to wash their hair. Sometimes their dog really did just get run over. This week, give someone the benefit of the doubt. No need to be a sucker, just don’t fly off the handle immediately and assume the position of jealous lover ‚ÄĒ otherwise you’ll end up giving them a real excuse not to call.

pisces (Feb. 19th-Mar. 20th)
Don’t believe everything you read on the web, especially if it’s in someone’s online dating or Facebook profile. Meet in person before calling each other shmoopy, inviting them to your parents’ house for Thanksgiving, or agreeing to anything involving a ballgag and a dog bowl.

MORE FROM EMandLO.com:

Your Call: The Relationship Is Great, the Sex Not So Much

September 29th, 2014


photo via Flickr

We get a lot of advice questions coming in at EMandLO.com, but sadly, we just can’t answer them all. Which is why, once a week, we turn to you to decide how best to advise a reader. Make your call on the letter below by leaving your advice in the comments section. 

Submit Your Own Question to EMandLO.comTry Our New
*PRIVATE*
Advice Service!

 

 

Dear Em & Lo,

My boyfriend and I have been dating for 3 years. We have a very healthy relationship and I love him to bits. I have a problem with our sex life. For the first year or so he didn’t make me orgasm at all. But I’m pretty laid back, and in that new relationship bliss I was happy just having sex with him. When I finally got sick of never climaxing, we had a really awkward conversation about it and some things changed, i.e. he starting using his fingers when going down on me, and I can get off when I’m on top. Still, I probably climax maybe 1 out of 5 times when we have sex and it bothers me. I find it hard to get turned on because I know there probably isn’t a happy ending for me.

To complicate things, my relationship with my ex (and only other boyfriend) was lacking in all other respects but was super sexually satisfying. We could spend, quite literally, an entire Sunday having sex and I had orgasms all the time. My current boyfriend is better looking, better endowed, and all around much more amazing, but I am so much less excited about having sex with him. The only thing I can think of is that it doesn’t matter to him whether I have an orgasm or not. It feels like he isn’t trying. By contrast, my ex really enjoyed getting me off.

I feel like talking about it has not gotten me where I want to go, and I’m afraid if I keep bringing it up he will get discouraged and give up altogether. I really miss having great sex. I don’t know how to fix this.

– Blue Box

What should BB do? Leave your advice in the comments section below.


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5 Ways the Meyer Briggs Test Can Improve Your Relationship

September 25th, 2014


by YourTango  |  photo via flickr

Having different personality types affects your relationship more than you realize. Are you like me? In a relationship with someone vastly different from you?

Whenever I am planning a trip, I start thinking about what I am going to pack at least three weeks ahead of time. I have created a master packing list of necessities for travel that I keep on my computer. That way I can modify the list depending on the time of year, climate at my destination, length of time I will be gone and purpose of the trip. About five days before “lift off,” I begin to set aside what I will need. I usually feel excited as I get ready and make sure that I am 100 percent prepared by the time I zip my suitcase closed before departure.

My husband, on the other hand, is a last minute packer. He doesn’t seem to give any thought to preparation until the day of the excursion when he often throws some clothing into a suitcase an hour before we leave home. Meanwhile, I stand by on the verge of a panic attack in fear that we will miss our flight. One November when we traveled from balmy California to blustery Canada, as we were gathering our belongings to disembark from the plane, he realized that he had forgotten to bring his winter jacket. As a result, he was chilled to the bone until we made it to a nearby mall to purchase a new one.

Read the rest over at YourTango.com:¬†Driving Each Other Crazy? It’s In Your DNA

How to Figure Out What Your Sex Dream Means

September 25th, 2014


photo via flickr

Other people’s dreams are never interesting…except when they’re about sex. Each week, our dream analyst Lauri Loewenberg tells one lucky reader what their dirty dream means. Got a dream you want Lauri to analyze? Click here to submit it (18 and older only, please). This week, a reader asks Lauri:

Last night I had a dream that I was at a school for a “lock-in” or something of that nature. During this event, I let a gay man perform cunnilingus on me while surrounded by people that I knew; however, I was not able to make out any faces. No one seemed to be bothered by it for whatever reason. I really seemed to be enjoying it, so much that I covered his face with a blanket and began to gyrate his face — and I also felt aroused in my sleep. It was really weird, but I have been having all sorts of weird dreams lately. I looked on different sites but could not find anything close to the actual dream, “heterosexual women has oral sex with a homosexual man…and likes it”! Please give me some insight!

Lauri: Here are some tips to help you figure out your dreams in the future:

1. Your dreams are always about you. Everything and everyone in your dream represents some part of your own self and some part of your life.

2. Your dreams can always be connected to something from the previous day: something that happened, something you talked about, something that was on your mind.

3. I have a really good book that will help you understand your dreams like never before! It’s called Dream On It: Unlock Your Dreams, Change Your Life, and you can get it here.

Now, knowing that everything in your dream is some part of you, let’s see if we can figure out what this gay man represents. Usually, when a woman dreams of an unknown gay man, he will represent her male, assertive energy, the part of her that “has balls,” so to speak. But your male self is gay… but was behaving in a very heterosexual manner. This may mean that you aren’t recognizing your male assertive side for what it really is. This may be why you covered his face with a blanket. Is there something you are wanting to keep under wraps right now? Or something you do not want to have to face?

Oral sex in a dream is actually about intimate conversation in real life. (anytime the mouth is involved in some form or fashion in a dream you need to look at your recent, real life communications). You were the receiver in the dream, so perhaps you were recently told something that excited you but that you don’t want others to know.

And typically when other people in a dream could care less about what you are doing, like when we’re naked in public but no one else seems to notice or care, it’s because your wise dreaming mind is trying to show you that the particular issue you are concerned about is not anything anyone else in your real life is giving any energy to.

So ask yourself what is it right now that has you excited yet concerned? The message of the dream is, don’t sweat what others may think about it. This is all about you and not them.

Visit Lauri’s brand new site,¬†WhatYourDreamMeans.com, for even more dream interpretations! If you want to be able to figure out your own dreams every morning, then check out her latest book,¬†Dream On It: Unlock Your Dreams Change Your Life, which will give you the tools you need to become a dream expert, too.¬†Check out all of Lauri’s books here.

 

 

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How to Make Your Ravishment Fantasy Come True

September 25th, 2014

There is perhaps no sexual fantasy that disturbs people more than the rape fantasy. ¬†Even people in committed, loving relationships who have successfully navigated such a fantasy with massive amounts of communication and trust can feel weird about it. Readers often ask us, “What’s wrong with me that I’m into this?” Well, as we have written before on this site: Nothing! The ravishment fantasyas we prefer to call it — is one of the most common, especially among women. (Here’s why.)

So if you’d like to make your own ravishment fantasy come true tonight, here are a few tips:

1.  Be in Love

Fantasies in general, but in particular ravishment fantasies, are best acted out with a long-term partner that you love, someone you can talk to about anything. Negotiating this kind of roleplay requires a boatload of communication and trust. Sure, some people like to act out rape fantasies with near strangers, but that’s crazy risky behavior, and not the sort of thing we’re talking about — or condoning — here.

2. Be Committed to the Role

Some people get all giggly and self-conscious at the thought of role-playing. While retaining the ability to laugh at yourself and the absurdity of sex is usually a good thing, a case of the giggles is really going to make it hard to get or stay in this particular mood. Try to remain in character.

3. Be Equally Committed to the Fantasy

Both parties have to be 100% on board with acting out this fantasy. This is not the sort of thing you should attempt to talk your partner into. Playing around with power dynamics in the bedroom can be heavy stuff, and if one person is unsure, serious damage can be done to a relationship in terms of trust.

4. Be Okay with It

Domination and submission fantasies are extremely common (hello, Judith Krantz novels?). And they aren’t automatically indicative of past abuse or some issue that needs to be worked out. Remember, what you two are doing isn’t actually rape: you are in control of the situation and the person in the submissive role is being dominated by someone they¬†want¬†to be ravished by, by someone they’ve given consent to. We’ve said it before, we’ll say it again: Just because you like to be tied up, spanked, and called “bitch,” doesn’t mean you’re a bad feminist. This type of fantasy can just be a fun/creative/intense way to add spice to a sexual relationship, especially long-term ones.

5. Have a Plan

You need to talk through this fantasy in advance and in detail: What exactly you each have in mind, what is okay, what is definitely not okay, etc. Go into specifics: Is hair-pulling okay? How about being tied up? Name-calling? How much pain do want to inflict/enjoy? Etc, etc. The more you discuss things in advance, the more you can lose yourself in the moment.

6. Have a Safeword

A safe word is a signal that either of you can use in the heat of the moment that means “stop” or at least “time out,” just in case things get too uncomfortable, either physically or mentally.¬† Don’t make it “stop” or “no,” because when you’re acting out a scenario — and you are acting — you want to be able to use words that heighten the drama. So go with something like “red light” or “taco night,” or, our fave, “babyfishmouth.”

7. Be Safe

A little bruise here or there is okay: a bit of safely inflicted pain can feel kinda good when you’re in a heightened state of arousal (as anyone who’s been spanked on the tush during sex can attest). Just be careful not to get too much into character: you certainly don’t want to end up with a broken wrist or a kick in the nuts! Genuine damage — physical or mental –¬†should not be the goal here.

8. Debrief Afterwards

Cuddle, hold each other, express your love for each other, and then have a little post-play analysis: What worked, what didn’t, what you could do better next time, if you could go even further next time, if there will even be a next time… Remember, the more you communicate before and after this sort of fantasy, the more you can disappear into your respective roles during the fantasy itself.

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The Revolution Will Be Televised: 15 Great Recent Feminist Shows

September 24th, 2014


Netflix’s “Happy Valley”

“The Golden Girls” was a historic show: four central characters, all female and all over the age of 60! Of course, back in the ’80s, it was an aberration: throughout television history, female actors have been in supporting roles mostly, with an emphasis on their youth and beauty. Sex and the City was a 90s update on that original foursome, with a chokehold on traditional beauty and Hollywood glam, but a lighter grip on our youth obsession, and a revolutionary embrace of female sexuality and all its complications. Showtime’s The L Word seemed to pick up where SATC left off, doubling down on the glam factor and the sex, but doubling the female cast size, as well as upping the diversity in terms of race and sexual orientation. Still, the television landscape was mostly dominated by dudes.

Now, a decade after SATC’s final episode aired, with a lot of “female-focused” trash in between — Desperate Housewives and The Real Housewives franchise do not serve the cause — television is experiencing something of a feminist revolution, with more and more quality roles for women that revel in their imperfections, explore their contradictions, and — perhaps most importantly — don’t always revolve around men. These past few years have seen a welcome trend in award-worthy (and award-winning) female-driven shows that aren’t afraid to portray women as ugly, whether inside or out. Thanks to the freedom and risk-taking that Netflix and cable channels have offered producers, the old notion that female-focused narratives have too limited an appeal has been blown out of the water.

Let’s hope the deluge of decent shows continues! The below series in our top 15 have all premiered sometime in the last three years, with many of them still in production and/or available on demand. We’ve left off many of the network shows that could be considered feminist — The Good Wife, Scandal, etc — but that aren’t necessarily groundbreaking since they often have a gloss that feels fairly unrealistic, dumbed down, or at least cliche. What we’re focusing on here is the cream of the crop in terms of feminist advancement, TV-wise:

The Ensembles

1. Orange Is the New Black¬†(2013, ongoing) — Has there ever been a show with this many women in it? A show that has a ratio of female-to-male characters at about 10 to 1? That’s so comfortable showing female diversity, in looks, body size, race, age and sexual orientation? It’s a boob-tube miracle! Thank you, memoirist Piper Kerman, developer Jenji Kohan, and Netflix!

2. American Horror Story: Coven¬†(2013) — The third season of FX’s horror anthology is more slick and stylistic than OITNB, but the main characters are also all female — some big, some small, some white, some black, some young, some old, and even one with a genetic disorder — with just a handful of men in supporting roles. ¬†These witches are powerful, sexually assertive, and oftentimes sadistic — not stereotypical feminine qualities.

3. Girls¬†(2012, ongoing) — The 21st century’s SATC on HBO, with four equally unlikeable yet oddly compelling female leads. Writer, director, producer, star (and probably caterer, too) Lena Dunham and her exhibitionistic tendencies have done more for female body confidence than all the Dove campaigns combined!

The Leads

4. Happy Valley¬†(2014) – This new BBC import by Netflix has the biggest baddass on TV since Walter White: both “Heisenberg” and Happy Valley’s “Catherine Cawood” are middle-aged, world-weary yet strong-willed and obsessive, reckless and resilient, with unexpected reserves of bravery. Except in her case, she’s on the right side of the law as a morally stable police sergeant (played impeccably by Sarah Lancashire). Fortunately for viewers, the camera isn’t afraid of the lines on Lancashire’s amazingly expressive face.

5. The Honorable Woman (2014, ongoing) – The Sundance Channel series from the U.K., starring Maggie Gyllenhaal as a Baroness and¬†Anglo-Israeli businesswoman, is incredibly timely and incredibly smart. Gyllenhaal is one hundred percent committed to her career — it’s more of a calling than a day job — and she kicks some serious ass along the way. There is no female eye candy on this show — all the women have their own motives and desires, and these desires are more along the lines of ¬†”peace in the Middle East” than “shoe shopping.” The show is complicated and sometimes hard to follow, but it’s a pleasant treat to feel like maybe you’re not quite smart enough for a television show.

6. Homeland (2011, ongoing) – This Showtime series follows one CIA agent’s major role in U.S. counterterrorism efforts. Talk about a flawed character! She’s got bipolar disorder, terrible taste in men, and pretty bad roots. Claire Danes is in the lead, so you know there’s no “pretty” crying on this show — just like in real life.

7. The Killing (2011 – 2014) – As we’ve written before, if you can get past the fact that the entire series revolves around the brutal murders of pretty young girls, this show¬†totally counts: the main character, homicide detective Sarah Linden¬†(Mireille Enos), is a strong, tough, independent woman who is sexual without being sexualized, realistically styled with sensible shoes and sweaters, and pretty bad at parenting. That her awesome male police partner doesn’t participate in macho posturing (and is unapologetically vegan!) is icing on the cake.

8. The Fall¬†(2013, ongoing) – Gillian Anderson plays a badass senior police officer (are you seeing a pattern here?) on this Netflix show, another BBC import. She’s a woman who knows what she wants and ruthlessly goes after it, whether that’s a serial killer (played by Christian Grey!)¬†or casual, no-strings attached sex.

The Comedians (Not Comediennes)

9. Inside Amy Schumer¬†(2013, ongoing) — She is unafraid to address the most embarrassing, unflattering, and horrifying aspects of being a woman in the most hilarious, un-pc, and feminist ways.

10. Broad City¬†(2014, ongoing) — Weird, random tales about two under-acheiving, disheveled, stoner dudes…and they’re female! After all, it’s approved and produced by “mighty girl” Amy Poehler.

11. Garfunkel & Oats¬†(2014) — Since we did our Anal Airlines bit 10 years ago, there will always be a special place in our hearts for two adorkable women who sweetly profess, without shame,¬†the benefits of anal sex.

The Great Equalizers

12. The Leftovers¬†(2014, ongoing) – While the main protagonist is male, this HBO show based on Tom Perrotta’s intriguing novel is full of interesting female characters who are damaged, dangerous and refreshingly not dolled-up. It’s missing the gratuitous T&A that HBO often feels compelled to cram into its shows to satisfying the paying straight male audience.

13. The Returned¬†(2013, ongoing) – Another Netflix import, this time from France, about a town whose dead inhabitants mysteriously come back to life. ¬†This haunting show follows a series of characters — some male, some female, all complex and all realistically portrayed.

14. Top of the Lake (2103) – If it’s a miniseries made by Jane Campion, you know it’s going to be a feminist heavy hitter. With rich roles for both women and men, including Mad Men‘s Elizabeth Moss as the lead detective investigating the disappearance of a pregnant 12-year-old and Holly Hunter as the spiritual leader of a compound of middle-aged women looking to rediscover themselves. (Rarely on TV do you see naked women who don’t have perky breasts and slim physiques — Campion dares to go there.)

15. Masters of Sex (2013, ongoing) – This critically acclaimed Showtime show was developed by a woman who assembled a majority-female writing cast (in the telly biz, that’s¬†rarer than a white rhino!). At the start of MoS’s second season this summer, Time magazine called it the most feminist show on television, in part because of its self-imposed rule that the¬†sex scenes on this show couldn‚Äôt just be about sex, they had to be completely connected to story. Take a tip, HBO!

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How “Fifty Shades” Has Changed Sex Over the Past 3 Years

September 24th, 2014

sponsored post

As if the whole Internet going gaga over the first trailer for the movie adaptation of E.L. James’ erotic novel “Fifty Shades of Grey”¬†wasn’t evidence enough, our friends over at LELO have actually quantified just how influential the story of Ana, Christian and his woven tie have been on the world’s sexual habits. They surveyed over 10,000 women from 8 countries over the past few years and discovered that the interest in kinky accessories inspired by “Fifty Shades” served as a gateway to enjoying other intimate objects and activities:

2012:

The Year Vanilla Turned Grey

(click for infographic)

Women were becoming more adventurous. Sex out of the bedroom was on the increase, sex toys were on the increase and kinky liaisons were on the increase too. Sales of whips and teasers increased by more than 50% and sales of Pleasure beads increased by more than 200%. Fifty-eight percent of global sex toy owners were expected to use premium personal massagers with their partner.

 

 2013:

The Kink Continues

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The kinky liaisons between the sheets continued throughout the first two quarters of 2013 with women everywhere feeling a new sense of sexual empowerment. But by the end of 2013 LELO witnessed a shift in how women wanted their pleasure.¬†¬†Sales of BDSM accessories, like whips and teasers, reached a plateau in the last quarter of 2013 compared with sales of premium couples’ massagers and vibrating couples‚Äô rings worn during intercourse, which increased by 82%. By the end of 2013, 72% of sex toy owners used massagers or rings with their partner.

 

2014:

The Year of the Vanilla Revolution

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LELO‚Äôs Global Sex Survey revealed women emerged from their kinky ‚ÄėFifty Shades‚Äô phase with liberated attitudes, finding ways beyond novelty and kink to enhance intimacy with their partners.

In 2014 LELO shows that¬†1 in 5 women have been involved in a threesome (double that of 2012‚Äôs findings). Similarly more than half of women in a relationship have made a home movie, and over a third have had sex in a public place.¬†More women have lived out their fantasies over the past 2 years but a whopping 80% said their fantasy¬†didn’t¬†live up to expectations. Either women have become more sexually confident since “Fifty Shades,” or they‚Äôve become more confident talking about their sex lives.

Kinkier ‚Äėnovelty-based‚Äô products like whips and hand cuffs have still¬†plateaued, but are expected to take a sharp rise around the release of the movie.¬†However, sales of couples‚Äô massagers, vibrators worn during intercourse, like IDA and Tara have increased by as much as 82% this year and are expected to continue to rise.

 

2015: Predictions for the Future of Sex

We would guess that immediately after Valentine’s Day next year, when¬†the “Fifty Shades” movie premieres, LELO will be absolutely pummeled by increased requests for¬†handcuffs,¬†blindfolds and teasers, not unlike Christian Grey on Ana’s bare bottom. Sales of kinky accessories will plateau (until the next movie in the series comes out), but by then even more women will have become comfortable buying and using bedroom accessories with their partners. A regular visit to LELO will be as normal as a dental checkup — but certainly much more pleasurable (unless, of course, you’re into pain).
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